Coaches Corner: Shawn Leung

Being a coach includes much more intricate components that are tailored towards addressing as many children as possible. When meeting a new team, I introduce myself as a coach and talk about my goals. Some of my goals include developing players’ mechanical skills, but I also aim to track their goals as competitors and as individuals.

One of my goals is to focus on developing my students as individuals. I find that many students already have goals to compete and improve their level of play but not many goals for further development. I aim to understand each player by listening and engaging in a group discussion (to allow for comfortability while maintaining a focus on specific players) or via Google survey. 

When my team is playing, I observe the atmosphere, level of communication, and in-game performance in which the students have that day. From observing, I am able to obtain a sense of how I may need to express myself and what I need to address with certain players. In the long run, my desire is to cultivate relationships within the team and encourage players to make new friends and help one another solve problems.

Sometimes, the day may be focused on teaching some students how to play—which may allow time to apply or learn concepts that can transfer to other games or comprehension of new material. Slowly but surely, I want to ease students into a more consistent schedule in which the students’ voices become the voice of the team. I want my role to guide them in their decision making, but ultimately I want to set them up for success by helping them learn to rely on each other. 

Here at Connected Camps, coaches are readily available to help each other and share their thoughts. We meet weekly to discuss some obstacles he/she may be stumbling upon, and others contribute toward a solution with an accumulated amount of suggestions and questions to help address many possible outcomes/purposes.

In summary, I focus on communication, collaboration, and cooperation regularly. These three “C”s help define the foundation of community cultivation which provides a space for players to make friends, have a good time, create new opportunities, and enjoy a space designed to provide them a sense of belonging and care.